Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy

In Memoriam: Baruch Brody Ph.D.


Tributes from Colleagues


Baruch was a visionary in the field of bioethics, and I know he had a deep and profound impact on many of his colleagues (including me) and all of his students. On a personal note, Baruch was my mentor, my colleague, and my friend. He taught me the power of kindness, how to be a fierce advocate for the underdog, the art of leadership, the politics of academia, the importance of working on the things you love, that relationships matter more than accomplishments, and so much more. Stepping into Baruch’s shoes as director of the Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy at Baylor College of Medicine was not easy. He was not only a brilliant scholar, he was hands down one of the best teachers I have ever encountered and one of the most thoughtful and compassionate clinical ethicists I have known. Baruch always encouraged me to think clearly, live fully, and find humor in the absurd. He will be sorely missed.
- Amy L. McGuire, JD, Ph.D., Leon Jaworski Professor of Biomedical Ethics, Director, Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Baylor College of Medicine

Baruch was a brilliant teacher, fully engaging medical students, residents, and clinical colleagues in his teaching. He was a master of his material, loved his students, and wanted them to become excellent physicians. They loved him back and learned from him how to deploy the tools of ethics to improve patient care. Baruch was also an extraordinary scholar, with many fine books and articles to his credit. I have some of his books, autographed, in my personal library, and now especially cherished. I truly believe that he had read the entire history of Western philosophy and understood it all. He was also a master of Jewish moral theology and a pillar of the Jewish community in Houston. The basis of his multifaceted success as a teacher and scholar was his amazing mastery of philosophy and many aspects of medicine, in a breathtaking blend always on awesome but never intimidating display. As a leader of our center, Baruch was an institution builder, of the old school in academia. When he left his position as director in 2013, he handed off a very strong institution to his successor, Amy McGuire. Baruch was also instrumental in making Baylor the great medical school that it is, having served for many years in the very important and sensitive role as chair of the Committee on Scientific Integrity and on the executive faculty. We on his faculty flourished under his collegial leadership and constant support and friendship. We love him and will miss him so much.
- Laurence McCullough, Ph.D., Distinguished Emeritus Professor, Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Baylor College of Medicine

Baruch’s death leaves a huge hole in our hearts. He was a friend, mentor, and a giant in the field. He will be missed for his wisdom, warmth, and fund of good stories. It was always a pleasure to share his company, fresh ways of thinking about complex issues, and ability to discern the key issues. There were few people who could give comments as helpful and penetrating as he could. He was a model for how to make a point gently but effectively, how to be helpful by asking questions rather than suggesting answers, and how to be a good friend. We will miss him and his smile and twinkle in his eye. But he lives on in people he helped, mentored, and befriended. He enriched and inspired us.
- Bernie Lo, M.D., President & CEO, The Greenwall Foundation

Brilliant man, mentor and mensch.
- Art Caplan, Ph.D., Drs. William F. and Virginia Connolly Mitty Professor of Bioethics, Department of Population Health, New York University

Baruch was an inspiration to me personally, and was responsible for my position at NASA for 15 years. He was a deep thinker and an institution builder not only at Baylor but in his community (he was a founder of a major school in Houston).
- Paul Wolpe, Ph.D., Director, Center for Ethics, Emory University

The synergy between brilliance and kindness was unmatched. I will miss him.
- Steve Joffe, M.D., MPH, Chief, Division of Medical Ethics, Emanuel and Robert Hart Professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, University of Pennsylvania

Baruch was one of my early inspirations in the field, for his intellect and approach and maybe even more for the integrity that permeated his work. I'm so sorry to hear that he's gone. He and everything he stood for will be sorely missed.
- Jeff Kahn, Ph.D., MPH, Andreas C Dracopoulos Director, Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics

What a successful life he had, if success is measured by how many people loved him and were helped by him and what he meant to his city, to his university, and to his faith community.
- Barbara Evans, Ph.D., JD, LLM, Alumnae College Professor of Law, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Director, Center for Biotechnology & Law, University of Houston

Baruch was an inspiring human being who contributed so much to the field of bioethics, to Greenwall and to each of us as individuals, as well as to Rice and Baylor and Houston, to his family and friends and Jewish community. I can only add that years ago when he was visiting Berkeley I was fortunate to spend many hours in conversations with him that were about literature, especially fiction, that were incredibly imaginative and wide ranging, conversations that I will always remember for his creativity.
- Jodi Halpern, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Bioethics and Medical Humanities, Joint Medical Program, UC Berkley School of Public Health

Though I never knew Baruch as well as I wished I had, the times I had to learn from him and interact with him were pivotal to my way of thinking and my understanding of what it might be to do meaningful work. I am so grateful to have known him.
- Anne Drapkin Lyerly, M.D., MA, Professor, Department of Social Medicine, Research Professor, Department of Obstetrics/Gynecology, Associate Director, Center for Bioethics, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

His book on the ethics of drug testing, pricing and approval was among those that shaped my scholarship. I devoured it.
- Jason Karlawish, M.D., Professor of Medicine, Medical Ethics and Health Policy, and Neurology, University of Pennsylvania

He was one of the best people I ever met. I don't think I can put it any better than that.
- Frank X. Placencia, M.D., Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Medical Ethics, Section of Neonatology, Baylor College of Medicine

He made such an impact on so many of us.
- Joseph S. Kass, M.D., JD, FAAN, Associate Dean, Office Of Student Affairs, Professor of Neurology, Psychiatry, & Medical Ethics, Baylor College of Medicine

He was a wonderful man. I enjoyed his company and always found him to be engaging, warm and sincere.
- Jeff Sutton, M.D., Ph.D., Director, Center for Space Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine

I just wanted to say that I'm feeling extraordinarily grateful that I had the opportunity to get to know him through the course he taught with Jenny. Thank you to Greenwall and Jenny for making that happen. He truly was an inspiring scholar, story teller, listener, teacher throughout and I quickly came to understand why he was treasured by so many.
- Lori Freedman, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of California, San Francisco

Baruch was such a vibrant thinker, an extremely generous teacher and scholar. He was so kind and thoughtful in our interactions. I learned so much from him recounting his personal experiences and consider myself so fortunate to have had the opportunity to spend some time with him this year through the ethics seminars.
- Keren Ladin, Ph.D., MSc, Director of the Lab for Research on Ethics, Aging, and Community Health (REACH Lab), Tufts University

Oh, how Baruch will be missed! He was a dear soul and, in his gentle way, a force of nature.
- Maria W. Merritt, PhD, Associate Professor, Berman Institute of Bioethics and Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University

He was clearly a singular, remarkable, and very human individual, and I will miss him. I feel fortunate, though, even to have been able to know him the short time that I did.
- Jeremy Greene, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Medicine and the History of Medicine, Elizabeth Treide and A. McGehee Harvey Chair in the History of Medicine, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

Baruch was the kindest, smartest and most wonderful person I worked with. While I did not move to Houston, I loved being recruited by Baruch and would have moved almost anywhere to work with him. And he is the one who came up with the political solution to merge SHHV into ASBH. What a wonderful person!
- Robert Arnold, M.D., Distinguished Service Professor of Medicine, Medical Director Palliative and Supportive Care Institute of UPMC, University of Pittsburgh

Baruch was one of the great ones, and the world is the lesser for his absence. I am so grateful for his generous gift of time and attention through the Greenwall Faculty Scholars Program. He never failed to ask a pointed question that helped me improve my scholarship, and he always had a twinkle in his eye and a word of encouragement. "Blessed" indeed, and we were blessed to have known him.
- Farr Curlin, M.D., Josiah C. Trent Professor of Medical Humanities, Duke University

I am so utterly sad to hear this news. just spending time with Baruch was an inspiration. His knowledge of everything, just everything, and his thoughtful insights always made me think “I’ve got to get busy!!” He was so accomplished, and I just slogged along. He helped me slog better.
- Haavi Morreim, J.D., Ph.D., Professor College of Medicine, University of Tennessee

I do feel quite fortunate to have worked with and known Dr. Brody -- and benefited from his tremendous mentoring.
- Aanand Naik, M.D., Associate Professor and Vice Chair of Medicine, Houston Center of Innovations for Quality, Effectiveness, and Safety, Michel E. DeBakey VA and Baylor College of Medicine

A wise and inspiring man. I feel so fortunate to have been able to learn from and converse with Baruch. I will remember his keen intellect, kind soul, and the youthful twinkle in his eye.
- Efthimi Parasidis, J.D., M.Bioethics, Associate Professor of Law and Public Health, Ohio State University

As a new instructor in the old "Office of Curriculum" I was recruited to be a preceptor in the Ethics Course. To ensure that I was grounded in the content, I attended all of the lectures. The first time I heard Dr. Brody present, I was gobsmacked. So many original ideas and subtle possibilities came flying all at once; it would take weeks to absorb them all. And yet, Dr. Brody truly cared that we understood (not necessarily agreed with) his philosophy and positions. He was such a generous man. When we were developing our professionalism program (PACE), he was always available when we had a question or concern. His positive enthusiasm gave me hope for a better world and he will be sorely missed.
- Anne Gill, Dr.P.H., M.S., R.N., Professor of Pediatrics and Assistant Dean Interprofessional Education, Baylor College of Medicine

I first became aware of Dr. Brody's work when I was a trainee. I looked to him as the calm voice of reason. He was a wonderful teacher. I particularly valued his advice on a professional disagreement I had to deal with a number of years ago. It was a small matter but he gave me his time generously. Sage advice.
- John Belmont, M.D., Ph.D., Professor, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine

Had the privilege of meeting this great man. His brilliance, humanity, and insight radiated. He truly left the world a better place.
- Frank Chervenak, M.D., Professor and Chairman, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Weill Medical College of Cornell University

He was a very farsighted academician who was instrumental in developing a new and much needed sub-discipline of academic science. We will miss his intellect and personality.
- Bert O'Malley, M.D., Professor and Chair, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine

As a Reproductive Endocrinology fellow, I walked the halls of ICUs with Dr. Brody. The issues involved the ethics of the allocation of ICU resources in a restrictive environment. I found his discussions intelligent and thought-provoking. His insight left a lasting mark.
- William Gibbons, M.D., Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Baylor College of Medicine

Although I only worked with Dr. Brody intermittently, I am truly sorry to hear of his passing. He was such a nice man. I pray that comfort and peace is given to his family during this difficult time.
- Ruth Reeves, Academic Administrator, Department of Biochemistry

I will certainly miss Dr. Brody's brilliant insight and scholar approach to ethical issues as well as his warm personality. I will keep him and his family in my thoughts.
- Fernando Scaglia, M.D., Professor, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics, Baylor College of Medicine and Director, BCM-CUHK Center of Medical Genetics, Hong Kong SAR

Dr. Brody brought the discussion of ethics to my chaplain training program 2007-2008. He was profound, thoughtful, and funny. He challenged us as chaplain residents to seriously think about and to take seriously our role. I am so grateful to have known him.
- Mary Bradley, Chaplain, Healthcare for the Homeless Houston

My condolences to his family and friends, he will be forever missed! We walked together many times on the hallways to get lunch, he was always open for conversation extremely accessible and humanitarian. May he rest in peace.
- Rosa Rodriguez, Patient Affairs, Baylor College of Medicine

By far one of the true giants in the field of philosophy, theology, and bioethics in the world. I shall forever be indebted to Baruch for the marvelous insight he so richly shared with us. His legacy lives on through not only the many, many articles and books he has written, but also in the people he so richly influenced with his grace and wisdom! We have been truly blessed by his presence and now commend him to a most blessed eternal rest!
- Charles Millikan, Vice President for Spiritual Care and Values Integration, Houston Methodist Hospital

I have heard that the greatest form of affirmation is imitation. I met Dr. Brody at one of the Ethic's conferences and I remember his presentation, especially his "Four No's" and "Six Yes'". I have shared this information, affirming what Dr. Brody taught me, in my place of practice many times. Thank God for the life of Dr. Brody.
- Joseph Perez, Chaplain, Valley Baptist Health System

From my time as a medical student at BCM, Dr. Brody's enthusiasm and passion for what he did was crystal clear and a true inspiration for all of us. I will always remember with great awe and respect his availability and willingness to consult on just about any matter.
- Donald Yee, M.D., Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine

Dr. Brody was a life changing educator for many generations of Baylor students, whose teachings and personal actions were an inspiration for how ethics could improve patients’ medical care. His kindness, humor and teaching will be missed.
- Catherine Seipel, M.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Anesthesiology, Baylor College of Medicine

I took Philosophy of Religion with Dr. Brody in 2012. He was one of the best professors I've ever had - you could tell he was passionate about teaching and challenging our thinking. I'm grateful to have had the opportunity to learn from him.
- Melody Tan, Ph.D. Student, Rice University

When I joined the board of the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners I asked the group if we enforced ethics errors. The response was positive. I then asked if we knew anything about ethics and the response was negative. Then I called Dr. Brody and asked him to educate the board. He came up and gave us an all-day seminar about medical ethics. Great for us and that is where the one hour per year requirement for all physicians licensed in the state of Texas was born.
- Dick Stasney, M.D., Professor, Department of Otolaryngology, Baylor College of Medicine

My condolences on the loss of Dr. Brody. He was a fine man and a great colleague.
- Timothy Palzkill, Ph.D., Professor and Chair, Department of Pharmacology and Chemical Biology, Baylor College of Medicine

Dr. Brody was a dedicated, caring ethicist and wonderful teacher. We will all miss him.
- Katherine Hwu, M.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine

Dr. Brody was brilliant, kind, fiery, and an amazing force to be in the presence of. Such a great loss for the world to be without him. I'm grateful to have known and have my life enriched by him. My sincere condolences to his family and those that loved him most.
- Jill Robinson, M.A., Research Manager, Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Baylor College of Medicine

The field of bioethics mourns the loss of a leader and visionary in the field. But those of us who were fortunate enough to know Baruch personally mourn the loss of a friend and colleague. As the years march on, students and scholars of bioethics will read his writing and apply his theories, arguments, and ideas to emerging and perennial issues. He was a crystal clear thinker, a creative thinker, full of case examples and stories to make his point. He leaves a body of work that is not to be ignored and will enrich the arguments and analyses of those who engage with it. What might not be as accessible as his published books and articles in future years are accounts of this giant in the field as a human being, friend, and colleague. I want to contribute just a bit to that to ensure that it is not lost. Continue reading.
- Jennifer Blumenthal-Barby, Ph.D., Cullen Associate Professor of Medical Ethics, Associate Director of Medical Ethics, Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Baylor College of Medicine

Baruch Brody was one of the very brightest philosopher-bioethicists, capable of beautiful insights. He wrote what may be the best defense of animal research I have come across--with a gentle, open-minded engagement with opposing views. Academic greatness did not prevent him from being a sweet and accessible person.
- David DeGrazia, Ph.D., Senior Research Fellow, Department of Bioethics, National Institutes of Health

It was an honor to work with and learn from Dr. Brody. His incisive writings and teachings were a light to his students, colleagues and faculty. As his student at the Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy, I learned from him a kind, thorough and disciplined approach to analyzing complex issues in bioethics. Those tools have served me well to this day. He was a pillar in our community and I extend my sincere condolences to his family, friends and colleagues. “May God console you among the other mourners of Zion and Jerusalem (Ha’makom yenahem etkhem betokh she’ar avelei Tziyonvi’Yerushalayim).”
- Linda Porter-Tucci, M.D., Houston Methodist Primary Care Group

In the early 1980's (I think, maybe earlier) Dr. Brody provided a two year course in Jewish thought at the Jewish Community Center. My memory says that it was tuition free. It was billed as an exegesis of the canon of Jewish theology. But really, it was a two hour period, one evening a week, where I could sit for two hours and listen to Baruch Brody think out loud. For me, having just finished 8 years of medical training following graduate school in philosophy of science, it was a haven of intellectual activity, away from the "trade school" of medicine. Dr. Brody instilled in all who listened not only a love for Jewish literature, but a visceral sensation of the relationships of body, mind, and spirit. I have continued this study for the last many years but remain in debt and in gratitude to Baruch Brody for this gift.
- Clifford Dacso, M.D., Professor, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine

I did not know Dr. Brody well, but he sat down with me when I started at Rice 15 years ago. He gave me advice on my research. He also presented in several of my courses, telling students about his experiences in philosophy and bioethics, graciously donating his time to help the next generation learn. His scholarship, knowledge and overall love of teaching will be missed.
- Kirstin Matthews, Ph.D., Fellow, Baker Institute for Public Policy, Rice University

Baruch was a leader at Rice University from the moment he arrived on campus, officially taking up his functions as the newly-hired Chair of Philosophy Department on July 1, 1975. With key figures from the Political Science and History Departments, he almost immediately set up a legal studies program for undergraduates. He also launched a new philosophy course that quickly attracted hundreds of Rice undergraduates. On a more personal note, he fought for a faculty position well before his first fall semester began, a position for which a search had been authorized and a candidate selected, at which point the administration moved to block the final signing of the contract, probably because of fiscal constraints. If not for his forceful intervention, I, the faculty candidate in question, would never have served a single day in the Rice University Philosophy Department, let alone the 40 years I in fact did serve. No doubt many can point to an action taken by Baruch in his time at Rice or Baylor that had a similarly profound effect on their lives and careers. He helped so many. He was a beacon in Houston, in so many ways, for over 40 years. No single individual can replace him. We are greatly saddened by his passing.
- Mark Kulstad, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus, Department of Philosophy, Rice University

I met Dr. Brody early in my career during ethics rounds at the neonatal nursery at Jefferson Davis Hospital. He was an inspirational figure, someone I admired more than almost anyone else in medicine. Our association continued when I became the Chief of Pediatrics at Ben Taub Hospital where Dr. Brody did monthly ethics conferences. I admired his intellect, wit, compassion,and above all his practicality, using ethics to genuinely help physicians work through difficult problems. I called to consult with him on many occasions and he always took the time to help and to gauge my feelings as well as the interests of the patient. I remember that we had a child with Trisomy 21 and heart disease who needed an operation that could not be done at Ben Taub; he needed to go to Texas Children's Hospital but we could not get him accepted. As we discussed the case, Dr. Brody not only assured us that we could tell him to go to the TCH Emergency Department so he would have to be accepted there, but as advocates for the patient we had an absolute obligation to send him there. He ALWAYS placed the patient first and taught generations of young physicians how to adhere to our Hippocratic Oath. I will miss him and his sage advice terribly, this kind, gentle but fiercely devoted man who helped more people than he ever knew.
- Jeffrey Starke, M.D., Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine

I had the pleasure of working with Baruch in just the last few years and on a paper comparing professional ethics to obligations in parenting. Baruch's investment in my writing, and by extension my career, was a true gift. His ability to methodically work through texts while spawning conversations about family life and obligations was its own gift. His love for Dena and their family spoke volumes more than his red pen. It gave me a window into a life well lived. That his name means "blessed" is no accident. Shalom.
- Jon Tilburt, M.D., Professor, Department of Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic

We mourn the loss of our esteemed colleague Baruch Brody. We were privileged to have worked with Dr. Brody for more than 35 years on a series of wide-ranging empirical ethics studies focusing on patients, their families, their physicians, clinical researchers, hospital administrators, and medical school leaders. The meetings during which these research projects were planned, carried out, analyzed and written about, which brought us into sometimes weekly face-to-face contact with Dr Brody, were occasions we anticipated with pleasure. We saw this brilliant thinker in action addressing real problems in a logical, principled manner. Dr. Brody’s gentle humor and “more-light-than-heat” approach made the meetings fun; sometimes his quips became part of the meeting minutes. Dr. Brody’s ethical argument that under certain circumstances placebo-controlled trials of promising but unvalidated invasive therapeutic procedures are not only possible but imperative led to a landmark trial of arthroscopic surgery for knee pain for which he received the Excellence in Research Award from Baylor College of Medicine. This trial, reported in 2002, had international effects, changing the expectations for how new invasive procedures should be tested before widespread clinical use. A brilliant mind, a principled person, a wise man, a revered and honored teacher not only of students but of his peers, a person graceful in the sufferings of the serious illnesses he had in his later years...Baruch Brody lived an exemplary life, and our world is a lesser place without him.
- Carol M. Ashton, M.D., M.P.H., Emeritus Professor of Surgery, Houston Methodist Hospital & Institute for Academic Medicine
- Nelda P. Wray, M.D., M.P.H., Emeritus Professor of Surgery, Houston Methodist Hospital & Institute for Academic Medicine

Professor Broody greeted me warmly when I joined the Rice faculty in 1995. He and Professor Mackenny would later invite me to join the Altering Nature research project. Working with him during the duration of the research gave me an opportunity to see a scholar, humanist, and great mentor at work and I will always cherish that opportunity because the research taught me how to think about ethics as we struggle with what seems to be a losing battle in protecting nature. In addition to his cutting edge scholarship on bioethics, Professor Broody remained loyal to his students and colleagues, showing up for meetings, seminars, and just being available even when he was dealing with health challenges. We have lost a brilliant mind and a decent human being. May the Good Lord keep his soul till we meet again.
- Elias Kifon Bongmba, Department of Religion, Rice University

I am a better physician and person because of Baruch. He inspired me to do better. Every conversation, encounter, and lecture that he gave left me invigorated to make the world around me a better place. Thank you Baruch.
- Al Hergenroeder, Professor of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine

I am deeply saddened to learn of Baruch Brody's passing. For nearly forty years he was my colleague in Rice University's department of Philosophy. Baruch is undoubtedly the smartest, and most learned, man that I have ever met. He was also the most diplomatic, a quality that served him well in department meetings, to which he unfailingly brought a sensitivity to the complex issues and personalities that can make such meetings troublesome. It is largely for this reason that the Rice philosophy department remained a congenial place throughout Baruch's tenure there, and the legacy of his example lives on. On the personal level, he and his wife Dena welcomed me warmly when I arrived in Houston and encouraged me generously when difficulties arose over the many years thereafter. Baruch had an abundance of empathy, and his philosophical reflections on ethics -- both applied and theoretical -- were deeply informed by this quality. Baruch was a great man, and his legacy, notable in so many areas of science and life, is a tribute to his character. In short, he will long be remembered, and he will be sorely missed. To Dena and their family I say: I am celebrating Baruch's life with you.
- Steven Crowell, Mullen Professor of Humanities, Department of Philosophy, Rice University

I have known and cherished Baruch for many years. He was a dear friend and colleague. His contribution to the field of medical ethics has been tremendous. His unique added contribution from a Jewish ethical angle is very appreciated. Besides being an outstanding scholar, Baruch was a very special human being, kind, honest and trustworthy.In the Jewish way I can state without hesitation: חבל על דאבדין ולא משתכחין. There are very few of his kind!
- Avraham Steinberg, M.D., Head, Medical Ethics Unit, Shaare Zedek Medical Center

While ethics is covered in school, it was Dr. Brody who made the concepts and their application real to me. Weekly neonatology ethics rounds at Ben Taub included many difficult situations in a patient population with few advantages to begin with. He challenged us to look at every side of a situation, to question our own assumptions, to consider how values differed and colored our judgment, and opened my eyes to the complexities of every decision. What I will most remember is his compassion and desire to do the best for the patient and the patient's loved ones. Intelligence, wit, kindness, patience, and love are the words I most associate with him. He always had a smile and a personal greeting to share. I will remember him with fondness and gratitude as a mentor who helped shape me personally and professionally.
- Virginia Schneider, P.A., Md Anderson Cancer Center

The very first philosophy book I read in college was by Baruch. That course led to my majoring in philosophy, and I felt so honored to finally meet him later in life. I was delighted to find that not only was he a brilliant thinker but also wise and practical. The field of bioethics will sorely miss him, as I do his sage advice.
- Scott Kim, M.D., Ph.D., Senior Investigator, Department of Bioethics, NIH

Dr. Brody was truly a brilliant scholar and contributor to his field. I remember him though as wonderfully warm, very personable and always welcoming. I was privileged to be treated as essentially an equal (even though I was not) and to have had so many conversations with him about ordinary things. I admired him tremendously and I am sad about his passing. Rest in peace Baruch.
- John Coverdale, M.D., Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Baylor College of Medicine

This is such a blow - he was utterly wonderful. I know his humanity has influenced us all.
- Michelle M. Mello, J.D., Ph.D., Professor of Law, Stanford Law School, Professor of Health Research and Policy, Stanford University School of Medicine

I was a student in his Philosophy of Religion class. He had an amazing ability to teach and truly cared about his students. He was one of the best lecturers I have ever had.
- Paul Abraham, Student, Rice University

After knowing Dr. Brody only through his scholarly work for the past few decades, since I was a graduate student in the 1980s, it was my great privilege to finally meet him when he came to Baylor University in 2011 to give a lecture on ethics in the 21st Century. The Baylor president asked me to formally introduce Dr. Brody, and it was such an honor and pleasure to spend a good part of the day with him. My most enduring memory is sitting beside him at lunch, in a private dining room in the faculty center, eating a kosher meal and trading Yiddishisms to the bewilderment, I suppose, of the others at the table. A couple of phenomena that probably never happened before at Baylor and that I've been trying, unsuccessfully, to replicate ever since. Most of all, I remember Dr. Brody as a brilliant and good and kind man. May his memory be for a blessing.
- Jeff Levin, Ph.D., M.P.H., Professor of Epidemiology and Population Health and Professor of Medical Humanities, Baylor University

Baruch was one of the first people whom I heard speaking on bioethics, even before I entered the field. His was a mind at once gentle and acute. He was an inspiration, intellectually and personally. He is missed, but lives on in all of us who reflect his words and wisdom in some small way.
- Alta Charo, J.D., Warren P. Knowles Professor of Law and Bioethics, University of Wisconsin at Madison

Media Component

What is Bioethics?


In this video, Dr. Brody shares his personal experiences on the field of bioethics and the impact it has in the lives of everyday people.


A Tribute to Baruch Brody


Read Jennifer Blumenthal-Barby's tribute to her friend and colleague on

Read the Tribute